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Israeli Lawmakers Visit South Africa In Landmark Visit

A group of Knesset members visited South Africa this week to meet with the country’s politicians and Jewish community – a first that comes amid tensions between the Jewish state and the African country.

“The delegation’s visit and meetings with the Jewish community dealt with the ties that bind the Jewish people worldwide, including Israel and the South African Jewish community,” said Zionist Union MK Nachman Shai.

The delegation contingent consisted of members of the Knesset from across the political spectrum, and involved meetings with the ruling African National Congress, the opposition Democratic Alliance and the heads of the South African jewish community, which still numbers in the tens of thousands.

Relations between Israel and South Africa have grown strained, with South Africa criticizing Israel for its treatment of the Palestinians. At a recent party conference, the ANC endorsed the BDS movement and called for South Africa to downgrade its diplomatic relations with Israel.

Contact Daniel J. Solomon at solomon@forward.com or on Twitter @DanielJSolomon

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